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The revised points-based system for the British HSMP visa is slightly different for a first time applicant compared to those already on HSMP applying for an extension. To help an applicant determine if they might successfully re-qualify under the new rules, workpermit.com has an HSMP Extension Calculator on our website.
In 2006 there were a number of significant changes to the immigration law in the United Kingdom. All those on employment-related categories and the Ancestry category now require five years of legal residence in the UK before being eligible for Indefinite Leave to Remain (ILR).
Many more changes are expected this year as the UK continues to try to find a system that meets the needs of the UK economy and at the same time is politically acceptable.
EU justice and home affairs ministers announced their intent to create new temporary visas for nationals from African countries. The initiative would essentially create a guest-worker program. Under the proposals, management of this scheme would be the responsibility of each member state and will depend upon the different labor market conditions in each EU country.
Ireland will no longer process asylum applications from citizens of European Union countries. The Irish government also announced a review of the immigration laws and policies. Many Romanians attempted to claim asylum after Romania joined the EU this month. The Irish government feels that these were primarily bogus asylum claims made primarily for economic reasons.
Australia's ministry of Immigration and Multicultural Affairs has been renamed to Immigration and Citizenship, among other changes. New citizenship rules are being finalized, and the 457 visa scheme is under parliamentary review. In the reshuffling of Australian Parliament, Immigration Minister Amanda Vanstone was sacked. She has been in the Australian Parliament for 22 years. Prime Minister John Howard described Vanstone as "a very colorful person."
Oizumi, Japan has a population of 42,000, of which about 15% are foreign-born, primarily from Brazil. In 2005, Japan became the world's first leading economy to suffer a decline in population, with 21,408 more deaths than births. This will force Japan to reconsider its current immigration policies.
Entry of Americans into the United States from Mexico, Canada and the Caribbean by plane now requires a passport or other official document, something Americans are very unused to. As of January first 2008, car and sea travel will also fall under the new rules. Puerto Rico, the Virgin Islands and other U.S. territories are treated as if it is travel between individual states, and so the new rules do not apply there.
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